Breathing exercises can be a powerful health tools to support overall mental and physical well-being.
The idea behind using the 4-7-8 breathing exercise is to elicit a sense of relaxation and calm. So effective, it has been shown to help people fall asleep in just one minute! This exercise works the same as meditation and helps to quiet the mind and let go of preoccupying thoughts.
You can perform this exercise in any position, but do your best to keep your back straight, especially while learning. Start by placing the tip of your tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind your upper front teeth and keep it there through the exercise. Do your best to exhale through your mouth around your tongue. If this feels awkward, you can try pursing your lips slightly.
Here are the five steps for the 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise:
- Exhale through your mouth making a whoosh sound.
- Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose for a count of 4.
- Hold your breath for a count of 7.
- Exhale through your mouth making a whoosh sound for a count of 8.
- That was one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of four breaths.
It’s important to make sure to hold your breath for a full 7 seconds. This will allow oxygen to fill your lungs and circulate throughout your body. This produces a relaxing effect in the body.
Practice the 4-7-8 exercise twice a day for two months until you have the technique mastered. You soon will experience all the amazing benefits of having less anxiety and stress in your life!